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Dublin: 14 °C Thursday 16 August, 2018

No stopping Cluxton – goalkeeper to captain Dubs again in 2016

Jim Gavin has asked the 34-year-old to lead his county for a fourth successive year.

Image: James Crombie/INPHO

STEPHEN CLUXTON WILL captain All-Ireland champions Dublin for a fourth successive year this season.

The Parnells stopper made his first appearance of the campaign for the Dubs in their surprise 1-12 to 0-9 O’Byrne Cup semi-final loss to Longford in Pearse Park on Sunday.

There had been speculation that Cluxton would follow in Dublin team-mate Alan Brogan’s footsteps and retire from inter-county football but his selection yesterday ended that talk.

The goalkeeper is no stranger to speculation about his inter-county future, the past few years it has consistently cropped up, but he just keeps coming back for more.

And today Dublin confirmed that Cluxton, 34, will continue to lead the Dubs for 2016.

Cluxton has five Allstars and three All-Ireland medals to his name and has been a key cog in the Dublin senior setup since making his championship debut against Longford in 2001.

The primary school teacher has captained the Dubs since taking over from Bryan Cullen in 2012. And his style of goalkeeping, particularly the range of his kick-outs and the use of him as a long-range free-taker, have had a clear influence on Gaelic football across the country.

Jim Gavin also confirmed that Diarmuid Connolly has returned to full training but Paul Flynn is unlikely to feature in the early rounds of the National League. Gavin has also given a number of other regulars “an extended break”.

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Alan Waldron

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